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Recap August 2017 – Very Busy Month!

recap august

Recap August 2017

To recap August, as you may know, I have moved my website from Etsy.com to a hosted site. I still intend to keep my original Etsy shop. This move gave me more control over my site and my online store. Of course, the move came with a few headaches, of which I documented in my post New Site is up and Running. Over the last few weeks I have been tweaking settings, updating product listings, a few special product sales and fixing small errors. Overall, everything has smoothed out and is working pretty well.

In between all of this, we had to deal with Hurricane Harvey. I live about two miles north of San Antonio and everyone from here to the Gulf Coast was told to prepare for the worst. Well, I am so very thankful that we were spared from the brunt of the storm. It missed us by just 40 miles! My heart goes out to all who have been so severely affected and we continue to pray for them.

What’s New on the Site?

The main new item on the site is a new blog series titled; Crochet – How to Begin. This is a series of posts to help those who are interested in learning to crochet. We will talk about how to get started, what supplies to get and where to purchase them, reading yarn labels, and finally, starting the first project. I am currently writing part three, the first project. I am also going to make a few videos to go along with this series. The link above is the main page where all the lessons will be posted. If you are interested, check it out. This is a free tutorial for anyone.

I am also going to list more items in my shop that I haven’t had the time to write up yet. I hope to get to these items over the next couple of weeks.

What have I Been Working On?

I have had a few made-to-order purchases that have also kept me busy! I have made a couple of the Mouse Hats, a Christening Gown and I am currently making a baby blanket for a customer. Here are some pictures of the Christening Gown:

Once I finish the filet crochet baby blanket I will post some pics.

Leave me a comment below,

Carl


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Crochet – How to Begin Pt 2 – Crochet Supplies

Crochet supplies

What Crochet Supplies Do I Need To Get Started?

Crochet Supplies is part 2 of the series, Crochet – How to Begin. You can read part one here.

In the previous posting we discussed what you should and shouldn’t do to begin learning to crochet. The main point of part one was to have you do a little research to find someone who does crochet and pick their brain a little to see if this is for you. Hopefully you were able to talk with someone and maybe they loaned you a crochet hook and some scrap yarn! If not, don’t worry as we are going to talk about supplies in this article.

Supply List

Let’s get down to business here! In order to start your first project, you will need the following items:

  • Crochet hook; I recommend a hook in the size of H-8, I-9, or J-10. (metric sizes would be 5.0mm, 5.5mm and
    crochet supplies - crochet hook
    Crochet Hook

    6.0mm) The color does not matter, and I recommend the I-9 hook to start with. Either of these three sizes would be acceptable to start learning with.

  • Yarn; Buy the most inexpensive skein of yarn! Do not spend money on a $10 sparkly skein just how to crochet - yarn sizesbecause it looks nice. To learn crochet just get the cheapest in a worsted weight yarn. Worsted weight will have a #4 on the label, and this is the standard, average weight yarn that you will be using most of the time.
  • Yarn Needle; A yarn needle is sometimes referred to as a darning
    crochet supplies - Yarn Needle
    2.7″ Yarn Needle

    needle. The large eye, blunt needle, means you can thread yarn through the eye and the tip is not sharp. This is needed to weave in your ends when you complete a project.

Where Do I Purchase My Crochet Supplies?

To get your first crochet supplies, I recommend Michael’s Craft Store or Hobby Lobby. The reason I suggest these craft stores is the prices are pretty decent for yarn and supplies, and they always have a 40% off coupon if the item is not on sale! Don’t spend extra money when you don’t have to.  (Tip: You can always buy the items separately and get 40% off each of your supplies! 🙂 ) I don’t shop at Walmart for crochet supplies because they really don’t have a large selection.

The crochet hooks can be bought individually and if you are not completely sure you are going to pursue crochet as a hobby, just buy the one hook. On the other hand, those who want to jump right in can purchase a set of hooks and many starter sets will include a yarn needle and a few other accessories.

What Brand & Color of Yarn should I buy?

What color yarn should I purchase? DO NOT BUY BLACK YARN!!!! You may use any color once you learn the basics, but ask anyone who knits or crochets and most of them will tell you they dislike working with black yarn. Myself included! It is very difficult to see your stitches even in bright light. Save yourself the aggravation, and your eye site, buy a lighter colored yarn.

The most inexpensive brand will depend upon which store you go to. Red Heart Super Saver Yarn is a good starting choice or Craftsmart which is available at Michael’s. I prefer Michael’s because their Loops & Threads line of yarn is really good to work with and the price points are fairly decent. I know Hobby Lobby has changed their line of yarns when the brought in their house brand, I Love This Yarn, a while back. They no longer carry many of the “cheaper brands“. Don’t rule out Hobby Lobby because you will find certain colors or styles of yarn that Michael’s does not carry and vice versa.

I Have My Supplies, Can We Start?

Some of you may be asking if you need to purchase stitch markers, tape measure, etc. You will not need these items for our first project, but if you purchase one of those crochet hook kits we talked about earlier, they will already have those items included.

In the next article we will begin our first project! What will it be? You will have to wait and read the next publication! For those of you who have some experience with crochet and want to skip the very first lesson, you can follow along and jump in when we cover something you need practice with or want to learn. Until then…

Carl


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Crochet – How to Begin Pt 1 – Baby Steps

Crochet supplies

I want to learn how to crochet, how do I get started?

This is part one of a small blog series to help you learn to crochet.

If you are reading this then chances are you have asked that same question at some point. Maybe you have seen crocheted items on Instagram or Twitter, and pondered the idea of learning how to make that item. Once that idea gets in your head, you then ask yourself; “Where and how do I begin?”

This mini-blog series will help you to answer that persistent question and get you started crocheting!

Baby Steps

Learning any new craft will take some time, a lot of time. The learning may take you a while, but the getting started phase should be a lot easier and we will explore some options to get you going. First of all, you need to prepare yourself to the fact that you will not be able to make a sweater or a little stuffed animal right from the start. Many people get started and quit right away because the were not prepared and struggle to make their first item.

Learn to CrochetOK, I understand that my first project won’t be an afghan! Now what?” Well, you are going to need some tools for your craft and we will explore some options here that won’t consume your bank account! Some people have gone to their local craft store to purchase their first items and end up buying all the wrong things and wasting their hard earned money.

Their first mistake was going to the craft store!

The very first item on your checklist should be to ask yourself, “Do I know anyone who does crochet?” Why should you ask yourself that question? Because it may save you money and a great deal of frustration! Speaking with someone who has gone through all this before can be an exceptional resource for you. That person can tell you about crochet, how and why they started. Hopefully they will lend you a crochet hook and a little bit of yarn. This is the part of saving you money until you decide if crocheting is really within you!

Some people will discover after talking with someone and/or learning a little, they really don’t like it. Now, if that Learn to Crochetperson is you and you went right to the craft store and bought all kinds of really appealing yarn and crochet hooks in the beginning, you would be frustrated and out a lot of money.

Finally, I don’t want you to spend a lot of money on supplies and instructors until you figure out if you really love crocheting! Yes, you must love it or you are just wasting your valuable time and money. You may not “love it” in the very beginning, but you should figure it out by the time you complete you first small item with me.

In my next installment of this little series, we will talk about exactly what supplies you need and where to get them! Until then, find someone who crochets and get some good information from them. I hope you will join us and follow along. You may discover a new love for yarn!

Carl

 Part 2: Supplies